Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
“His [Irfan’s] fitness wasn’t compromised at all”
Pakistan bowling coach Mohammad Akram has announced that he believes the national team’s bowling attack will benefit from a rotation policy as it will limit their workload and decrease their chances of getting injured.
Akram’s comments come after left-arm pace bowler Mohammad Irfan was forced to miss the World Twenty20 after failing to recover from a hip injury.
“We have decided to focus on the Under-19 level to get a group ready right from the start,” Akram said. “Meanwhile we have realised the need for a rotation policy and both captains [Misbah-ul-Haq and Mohammad Hafeez] should accept and adapt the mechanism and implement it in the long run.
“Irfan is a lethal bowler but it’s not like we are overreliant on him. If you remember we won the (ODI) series in South Africa without him. So there are a lot of things we have discussed and we are thinking ahead now, and I can assure there is no sense of deprivation in the dressing room and from the captain.”
However, Akram made it clear the Pakistan never “compromised” Irfan’s health by making him bowl a large number of overs in one spell.
“His [Irfan’s] fitness wasn’t compromised at all,” Akram said. “He was played rightly and was fit enough for the match but injuries are part and parcel of the game.
“It can’t be avoided by the doctors and the bowling coach. What we can do is try and manage the bowlers’ workloads.”
With Irfan out of the picture for the World Twenty20, Pakistan will have to rely on Umar Gul to be their pace spearhead.
“Umar Gul’s performance since his comeback has been outstanding and we need to have a senior like him in the team,” Akram said. “He just returned from an injury and his still bit wary about taking a full workload, which is natural, especially after a knee injury. We are expecting him to bowl 10 overs in the ongoing practice matches so that he can get back to full flow.”